Alternative Baseball brings opportunity to those with learning disabilities

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Photos Taylor Duncan : Alternative Baseball Organization’s Barstow team is now accepting applications to join the team, practice begins late spring or early summer 2021 (due to COVID).
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Although Alternative Baseball Organization began in Dallas, Georgia…it has just made its way to the Inland Empire.

Alternative Baseball provides an authentic baseball experience for teens 15+ and adults with autism and other disabilities to gain social and physical skills for success in life on and off the field.

Taylor Duncan, CEO and commissioner, who was diagnosed with autism at the age of four, started the 501c3 organization back in 2016 after his very own mentors provided him with a positive experience playing baseball and including him in other social activities.

“I understand that so many people in the world with autism do not have the same experience, as many of us are often pushed away from participating in traditional sports or other social activities, so I wanted to tread way for all of us to have an equal opportunity experience and have our participants feel empowered for the first time,” said Duncan.

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He also shared that for those with autism, many areas stop providing support and activities once they reach the age of 18.

“The reason why I made the age requirement from 15 years to infinity is to provide everyone with an opportunity to get out on the field to have fun, because a majority of autism programs end at the age of 18,” continued Duncan.

Now, those living in the Inland Empire who may have autism or any other learning disability will have an opportunity to be a part of an inclusive team, where participants can strengthen teamwork fundamentals and create friendships.

“Our league was initiated in Georgia, but today we’re all across the country and soon coming to Barstow, California for those living in San Bernardino County. We also have a team in Pasadena and a couple others in Orange County,” Duncan said.

The league plans to get started and focus on practice beginning early summer and throughout 2021, before venturing off and facing other nearby teams, following a travel ball-like structure.

“I’m excited to grow the league in California, we even have a team in Las Vegas. But more than anything, I’m looking forward to providing those with disabilities an opportunity to play a sport that teaches character, perseverance and teaches us not to give up when times are tough. We’ll all be out on the field, just being ourselves and having fun,” concluded Duncan. To sign up or learn more, visit www.alternativebaseball.org .

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